If you play a musical instrument, you might have used or heard of a tuning fork. A tuning fork is an acoustic instrument calibrated to specific frequencies.


When struck, the tuning fork produces a very specific musical pinch depending on its unique frequency. This serves as a standard for tuning musical instruments like pianos and violins.


How a tuning fork works?

Sounds waves are created when any objects vibrates. By hitting a tuning fork, you're causing its tines to vibrate back and forth several hundred times per second. The way a tuning fork's vibrations interact with the surrounding air is what causes sound to form. In scientific terms, the speed of a tuning fork's vibrations is known as its frequency, a quantity measured in hertz (Hz), or vibrations per second.

The faster a tuning fork's frequency, the higher the pitch of the note it plays.


The many uses of a tuning fork

Tuning fork therapy is known for bringing the body and mind into balance and supporting the release of negative thoughts or emotions. Many integrative medicine doctors, acupuncturists and other healers bring tuning forks into their professional practice, but you can also reap their benefits at home.


As a general rule, anywhere that feels “stuck” can benefit from tuning fork therapy. The gentle sonic vibrations treat stress and anxiety, insomnia and even allergies. Even if you feel well mentally and physically, using a tuning fork can help quiet the mind before a big project or during a meditation or yoga session — an essential step in our busy world!


For Healing

Striking a tuning fork, then holding it against an area that feels tense or painful is believed to alleviate symptoms and encourage healing.


For Self-Care

Uning forks can stimulate mental energy and heighten self-awareness. It can also help the mind come to rest. Adding a tuning fork ritual to your nighttime routine signals that it’s time to unwind.


For the Home

You can strike a tuning fork to fill rooms or areas where the air feels stagnant with energizing vibrations.


Tuning Forks and Crystals

Using a tuning fork with a crystal can elevate and expand your rituals. Striking the fork against a crystal creates pure tones that are believed to resonate more deeply. Choose the type of crystal that speaks to your needs on any given day.

Here are some examples:


With clear crystal


Clear Quartz is possibly the most versatile, multipurpose and powerful healing stone available, due to is unique helical spiral crystalline form. The clarity of its many faces can spark memory, hone concentration, and bring your whole being back to balance.


With rose crystal

A heart healer, Rose Quartz brings its petal-soft shades and gentle vibes to help you let go of old hurts and stitch up the wounds of your soul. This pale pink quartz is all about positive energy, deep compassion, and learning to love yourself.


With smoky crystal

Deliciously warm energy radiates from this Smoky Quartz stone. The Smoky Quartz is also called The Stone of Power and has a long and mystical history, often used by Druids as a seer, the Smoky Quartz is a light bringer, ever ready to ground us to the places we are meant to be.



How to Use a Tuning Fork

Introduce more mindfulness to your home and your daily rituals. Here’s how:

  1. Strike the tuning fork to start its vibrations. You can strike it against your knee or a nearby hard surface — or against a crystal to increase the benefits.

  2. Close your eyes and let the sound fill the space. Allow the mind to quiet and breathe deeply.

  3. Bring the tuning fork close to the body. Hold it near your ear or try placing the base of the fork against the temple, in the center of the forehead or at a pulse point to further quiet the mind. You can also place it against an area that feels stuck, such as cramped muscles or sore joints.

  4. Or move the tuning fork slowly around the room. This will help stimulate energy and movement in spaces that feel stagnant.

  5. Envision your life. Before opening your eyes, take a moment to visualize your ideal lifestyle. What is your next step?


As Marie Kondo said “Tuning forks are one of my favorite self-care tools, I use them before speaking to a large group of people, visiting a new space or whenever I need to clear the air. I use a tuning to feel centered and present in the moment, it awakens my spirit.”


If you would like to add tuning fork into your rituals, check our SHOP here.





"Smudging generally refers to the practice of burning herbal material. It can be done for practical reasons or for spiritual or ceremonial purposes. "


It is an ancient ritual originating from Native American cultures, involving the practice of burning bundles of different herbs, mainly sage, during sacred religious and spiritual ceremonies. Indigenous peoples believe the smoke from specific herbs restores the energetic and spiritual balance. They use it for praying and healing ceremonies as well as to purify spaces, bodies, and objects, restore mental clarity, and bring vision.


In non-indigenous societies smudging is not rooted in religious ceremony but has become an extension of the wellness movement; a way of people reconnecting with themselves by taking a pause from the stresses of modern life.


According to yoga philosophy, our whole world is made of vibrations. You and me, the air, the sky, our minds, and everything visible and invisible continuously vibrate. Ancient yogis believed that out-of-rhythm vibrations in the body are the main culprits for diseases. They clog your energy centers chakras and prevent the vital energy prana from flowing smoothly and your mind and body from functioning in harmony.


Smoke bathing and yoga is a perfect marriage. The lingering fragrance from burning herbs amplifies the intention set for yoga practice and aids with the mood. It also helps clear space from stagnant energy so that you could fill it with a good one by practicing yoga.


When burning herbs can help with the Prana?

  • Moving into a new house

  • After you or someone in your house has been sick

  • After a traumatizing event

  • After having visitors (especially if that wasn't a pleasant encounter)

  • Before a yoga practice, meditation, journaling session

  • When feeling ill at ease at your own home.

Or anytime you feel like.


How to Choose Your Smudge?

Different plants carry various properties and benefits. So if you hold a specific intention for your smudging ritual, you should select an herb that resonates with said intention. If you are drawn to a specific smudge, trust that intuitive calling. There is an underlying reason and purpose. Here are come common options.

  • Sage is used in many different ways, it helps the people prepare for ceremonies and teachings. Because it is more medicinal and stronger than Sweet grass, it tends to be used more often in ceremonies, it also has physical healing properties, you can boil sage and drink it as a tea. White Sage is used for releasing what is troubling the mind and for removing negative energy. It is also used for cleansing homes and sacred items. A close relative of white sage, Blue Sage is also good for healing and cleansing rituals. Its soothing, relaxing smell can be used to aid meditation, or burned simply for enjoyment. It’s not as pungent as White Sage, and is more agreeable to some folks who find the strong, bracing scent of White Sage overpowering.

  • Sweetgrass purifies your space and energy, this very special herb's sweet vanilla-like scent is the breath of the Earth mother, bringing the blessing of Mother Earth's love. Sweetgrass is burned to invoke the Divine Feminine. The sacredness of the sweetgrass herb then sustains the smudging process. Use a smudging feather if you need to douse the flame or promote more smoke.

  • Cedar is often used to cleanse a home or apartment when first moving in, inviting unwanted spirits to leave and protecting a person, place or object from unwanted influences. It is a very slow burning and perfect for full smudge rituals.

  • Palo santo is a sacred wood that comes from the Palo Santo tree indigenous to the coast of South America. Shamans have traditionally used it to clear negative energy and increase love and prosperity. It burns fairly slowly, and its woodsy scent is rich and inviting. It aids in healing the physical body, especially after an illness.

  • Bay Leaves have multiple uses from Protection, Healing and Calming to Success, victory and being an Anxiety reducer. The aromatic Essential oil in bay leaves, while smudging is known to work as a mood booster.

A quick warning: The plants listed are not harmful or dangerous under normal circumstances. Still, they can cause irritation and allergic reactions in some people. If you have asthma or respiratory problems, burning anything may not be great for your health. (Consult a doctor or herbalist if you have concerns.)



How to smudge?

All you need is Smudge Stick, Fireproof container, Candle/matches, Way to extinguish, and your Intention.


  • Light one end of your smudge, allowing it to catch fire and burn for several seconds. Once the flame extinguishes, gently blow on the lit end to fan the embers; the smudge will begin to glow and smoke.

  • Lay the smudge on a heat-proof dish, such as an abalone shell, to catch the ashes as it burns. (Safety note: we should always respect the power of fire when using it in ritual.)

  • Fan the smoke over and around yourself and your space.

  • As the smoke rises into the air, picture your intention, whatever it may be. If you are clearing negative energy, picture its density and see it lifting away. Healing? Then imagine the smoke cleansing any illness or injury. Whatever it is, envision it floating away on the smoke. You can pray or chant if you feel so called.

  • Continue to use your hands or a feather/fan to guide the smoke over yourself and around your space.

  • In Native American tradition they begin facing East, then South, West, and North before finally turning East again. Another ways is called “circumambulation”. Start at the front door of the home and light your smudge stick. Then, begin to move around the home. Move mindfully and with care, walking clockwise around the entire perimeter of the home. Be sure to allow the smoke to drift into even the hidden spaces, like inside closets, basements and dark corners. If there are stairs, just go up or down when you encounter them. Then keep moving clockwise until you meet the stairs again. Then continue to go down or up the stairs and resume the main floor. And, if it feels okay to you, it’s helpful to chant a mantra or a prayer that you’re connected to. This is a way to fill the space with more cleansing vibrations. When you arrive back at the front door, chant your final mantra or prayer. Visualize the entire home is filled with bright white sunlight. Then speak your intention one last time to close the smudging ceremony.

  • When finished, extinguish your smudge or let it burn out on its own. It’s often said that it will burn as long and strong as needed to fulfill the intention.


Smudging rituals are a beautiful technique to clear a space. This can be done annually or more often.


Check our SHOP for smudge sticks of your choice.



The Comprehensive Yoga Mat Guide


A Yoga Mat is your companion. You want your companion to support your practice, and you want them to spark joy and inspire your practice every day.


If you are familiar with Marie Kondo (the author of ‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing’), you will notice her philosophy is about more than tidying up or throwing things away. Instead, at its foundation, Marie Kondo’s philosophy is a call to own things with awareness and connect your surroundings with inner joy.


With that in mind, here is a simple guide to help you find your companion.

 

Yoga mat options in the current market

Yoga mats come in all shapes and sizes, not even mentioning the various brands. But there are three things that are necessary to be considered, MATERIAL, THICKNESS, YOGA STYLE.


Material


All Natural Rubber Yoga Mats – Beautiful. The most slip-resistance material on the market, rubber yoga mats is open-celled, meaning that the mat will “suction” to hands and feet, for a super sticky experience. These yoga mats are resilient and tend to bounce back from use. This material also provides a premium cushioning experience without damaging the environment. On the other hand, expect a funny smell upon opening. Rubber yoga mats are also on a heavier side and may need to avoid oil and proper cleaning.





Cork Yoga Mats- Cork yoga mats are made of a tree’s bark combined with natural rubber or TPE (as the base). Generally, cork is a great eco-friendly material: renewable, biodegradable, and naturally antibacterial. But cork yoga mats are probably most loved for their grip. The wetter the surface, the better the grip. Due to its high-absorbent nature, cork yoga mats don't need much cleaning.








TPE Yoga Mats (thermoplastics) –  A rubber-like material that is designed to be elastic, cushioning, durable, and reusable. While synthetic, these mats can be recycled at the end of their use-life to create more mats. TPE yoga mats are often manufactured using closed-cell technology, which means that they have an impermeable texture and repel sweat and dirt. It's the best choice for beginners. But if you’re caught on a TPE mat in a hot yoga class – you’ll likely end up losing grip and slipping all over the place.





Jute Yoga MatsJute’s a very versatile fiber that’s used to make everything from cloth to wrapping bails of hay. In fact, it’s the second most important vegetable fiber after cotton. So it makes sense that it would be used to create a natural yoga mat that’s an alternative to natural rubber and other natural materials. It’s a natural fiber that’s both highly grippy and sweat absorbent. The surface is slightly rough as you would expect with a natural fiber like jute.









PVC – is a plastic-based material that many mats are made of. It is dirty cheap, extremely durable, and easy to clean. They’re not absorbent, so they can become very slick when wet with sweat. It’s also latex-free, a consideration if you have latex allergies. But it’s not biodegradable or as environmentally good as other options.







Thickness

There is no one size fits all. You can find yoga mats as thin as 1/16 of an inch (about 1.5mm) or as thick as 1/2 of an inch (nearly 12 mm). The thicker the mat, the more padding you get for your joints, knees, and spine, and less connection with the hard floor, which will make it hard for you to find balance in standing postures.




1/4″or 6mm Yoga Mats – These mats are by far the most popular in the industry. A large portion of premium yoga mats stays within the 1/4″ thickness because it’s a size that has proven to be both durable and cushioning. There are more limited options when it comes to mats made of materials that are kinder to your body and the environment. Luckily, mats that are made from natural rubber or cork cannot be too thick. Natural rubber provides enough cushioning at 5mm and has more density than more common mats so there is no need to go for a thicker mat than that.


1/8″ or 3mm Yoga Mats – While not as thick as a 1/4 inch mat. These mats are known for the support and durability , they are also easier to take to classes compared to the ones above. However, please be mindful of your own particular requirements and health condition – if you have an injury, joint sensitivity or are pregnant it may be best to consider the thicker one for better cushioning.


1/16″ or 1.5mm Yoga Mats – This is the thinnest version of a yoga mat that you can get your hands on. It is the preferred option for people who travel and need a mat that’s lightweight. These mats are light, compact (as they can be easily folded), and offer a good connection to the ground, helping with the balance. This is not for someone with achy knees. It does have great traction. Most traveling yogis will use this on carpet or earth, so they are not dependent on this for their primary form of support.




Style of Yoga


Hatha Yoga – Hatha covers a wide range of classes that teach physical postures. Typically, Hatha yoga gears itself more to beginner classes. We recommend that you are just starting out, practice on any material with good thickness support within your budget until you have an idea of which direction you would like to head.


Ashtanga Yoga People are arguing whether a mysore cotton rug is better because it works better for jumping back and jumping through ; or a good grip modern yoga mat is better despite all the sweat covering our hands and legs in Ashtanga practice. Or there is a Jute and PVC combination, it is durable and natural feeling like the rug. But committing to an Ashtanga practice means your mats are likely need to be replaced more often even the most-sturdy mats on the market.


Vinyasa Derived from Hatha yoga, there are a few differences: Pace, and Flow. The much faster paced Vinyasa moves you through asana after asana. The flow becomes just as important as the final asana in this class. Because of the movement, we recommend a mat that is smooth but still has a lot of sticks. Check out a natural rubber mat. They have very little texture, but still provide tack for sweaty hands and feet.


Iyengar – Proper alignment is where Iyengar starts and ends. You will not get your heart rate up and therefore sweat as much as in other styles. Balance is key. Because of that, it’s not as important to have a super sticky or cushiony mat. We recommend using very firm 1/4″mats or thinner 1/8″mats. Alignment mats are also incredibly helpful for this practice.


Bikram/Hot Yoga – These two styles are very similar. Each happens in rooms heated 100 degrees or more. Expect to sweat a ton. Because of this, we highly recommend using a cork yoga mat or microfiber mat that is washable. You will sweat like mad.


Yin/Restorative – Since both yin and restorative-style classes require holding poses for extended periods of time, the experts say that your mat should be thick and comfortable to the touch and as plush as possible. Holding pigeon pose should feel *extra* luxurious. In terms of padding, you should be looking for mats that are at least 5 mm or 5/16 inch thick.

After considering all the angles of a yoga mat, don’t forget to ask the most important question:

Does your choice sparks joy? ;)


Check our SHOP find your joyful Yoga mat today!